ESPN released their fantasy football projections for the Chicago Bears, and that includes defense as well. While everyone has a gripe of some sort with ESPN, they do a good job of season-long projections, and at the least, it gives us a baseline of expectations for the upcoming season.
We are looking into the stat projections of Justin Jones and whether or not he will hit these expectations.
3. Over or Under 598 snaps for Justin Jones with Chicago Bears in 2022?
Justin Jones was signed because the Chicago Bears lost out on Larry Ogunjobi. They wanted Ogunjobi to be their centerpiece of the defensive line, and therefore lead the interior unit in snaps.
With Jones signed to step into that role, it is no surprise that he is leading the group now. However, 598 defensive snaps would be a career-high for the 25-year-old entering his fifth NFL season.
From 364 to 504 to 527 and 486 last season, this would be his most snaps by about 70. This could be a lot for Jones, who has never proven that he is worthy of getting much more work.
However, while they are projecting a rise in snaps for him, Ogunjonbi is typically a player who exceeds 700 snaps per season. That is what they signed him for.
So, even if he does get the 70 snap increase, he will still be a disappointment in terms of the role that Ogunjobi was expected to fill. When you look at the Bears depth on the interior Angelo Blackson has never been more than part-time, and Mario Edwards is an inside-outside rusher.
The lack of depth, the fact that he should slide into the Ogunjobi role in the best way he can, and his projecting still leaning closer to his career numbers than the numbers that Ogunjobi was supposed to fill have you thinking that the Bears may try to get closer to 700 snaps out of Jones, than 500. Of course, his play will dictate that.